Tuesday, November 24, 2009

How did I not learn to love the hot glue gun before?

I've resisted buying a hot glue gun for years. Perhaps it was because I was railing against the 90s frou frou, topiary and fabric meets hot glue gun decor but I was convinced that I did not need a hot glue gun. Not when my priorities in choosing something to go on the middle of a table are that it's functional, can be lifted with one hand and easily be dusted. But a while back I was inspired to make something that I've since forgotten and bought the glue gun. The poor thing has sat, neglected in the sewing room for months until this week.

A last minute primal push to somehow put together an advent calendar was the reason. I still plan on putting together some kind of nativity themed one, possibly out of fabric but that was not happening this year on such a short timeline. If anything, age has allowed me to be realistic about my abilities. That or I'm lazy. I think the former sounds a bit more sophisticated.

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After scouring google images for inspiration and wasting way too much time overthinking it I settled on this nifty little tube pyramid. If you've ever gotten those single serving tubes of sour cream you'll recognize these. I bought a 50 page 8x8 scrapbook paper pad that had a rainbow of solid textured pages. Office labels stood in for a spot to write the number of each day.

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This is pretty easy but in case you need pictures like I do, just wrap the sheet into a tube and glue with your new best friend the hot glue gun. Warning: Asbestos fingers are a blessing when doing this type of activity.

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Turn the tube with the seam to the center back and then squeeze a line of hot glue along the top inch and squeeze shut.

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The tube will now be squeezed only at the top. Place a number in the front of the tube and your advent units are ready for the next step.

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So, after you've repeated the above 23 more times you've got a beautiful rainbow of tubes to fill.

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This was the most time consuming part of the project. Coming up with a list of bible excerpts from the nativity story (Luke 2) and activities/crafts for each day. Hard because it meant being realistic and keeping things super simple in order to be able to follow through. Plus it's the holidays and I don't need additional stress. I kept the activities fun, short, simple and family friendly.

Just print the list and cut out a slip for each day.

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Of course, after you've bought your child a pre-made advent calendar that dispenses chocolate each day there's just no turning back from that standard. I alternated between two of my nut-free favorites. I tucked in one piece for each child and on some days even one for Mr. Maricucu and me.

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Fill a tube with one slip and the treats. These were pretty large tubes and you could definitely do a small toy instead of chocolate or even a small ornament as well.

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Place a line of hot glue on the lower part and squeeze the tube shut in the opposite direction as the top part (aka perpendicular). That way you end up with a triangularish/pyramid shaped tube. If you use chocolate and your hot glue is pretty hot, let these cool upside down so the chocolate doesn't melt in contact with the hot glue.

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Wash, rinse, repeat. You know, for someone that has done neutral colors for so long the birthday bunting and now this project have totally wet my appetite for bright, bright, shades.

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I punched a hole at the top of each tube.

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Then tied a short piece of ribbon to the punched hole. I'm going to use ornament hooks to hang them up. Now the big decision. Do I hang them on a piece of knotted ribbon on the mantel where the baby can swat at them repeatedly from her perch of the indoor climber or accept my reality and hang them from the tree which would mean hunting for one each day? Don't know yet and I don't even have my tree up so we'll see.

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14 comments:

Lowell said...

oh-this is awesome Marielle! I think I have enough scrapbooking paper to do this. I just need to make notes, get candy, and do them. I'm assuming I wouldn't HAVE to use the hot glue gun if I don't have one right? I probably do need one though.... :p

Marielle said...

Sure, as long as the paper is flexible enough to stick shut until the glue dries, a glue stick will work too. Glad you liked my lazy idea LOL. I find that when it comes to the paper crafts I'm a fish out of water. There's definitely an art to scrapbooking, etc. that I have no talent for.

I also just realized that if I hook these onto a knotted ribbon hanging over our china hutch, along a bookshelf or over a doorway are also options.

Lowell said...

The temptation was too great-I'm now the proud owner of a hot glue gun and a lot more paper! I'll take a picture when I'm done.

Marielle said...

Ha! The subliminal messages have worked. Yeah, who am I kidding - I'm can barely keep my own mind in order, can't mess with anyone else's. Can't wait to see it! Have fun.

The Little Details said...

This looks wonderful!

Tcilou said...

Great idea!!!

I hope I'll have enough time to make it before wenesday.....

Thanks for this idea!

Tcilou said...

I did it (but with adhesive tape)
Thanks for the idea!!!

Marielle said...

Yay! I'm so glad it worked for you. Sounds like a good alternative option for adhesive.

Make handmade said...

So cute food gifts! i love it...

Beth (www.livinglifeintentionally.blogspot.com) said...

Super cute idea! I love how colorful it is!! I wanted to invite you to link up to my TGIF Linky Party - http://livinglifeintentionally.blogspot.com/search/label/Linkey%20Parties
Beth =-)

Hfritz1215 said...

You are a genius! I had an advent calendar for my kids when they were little - now they are 24 & 25 and still talk about it - they live out of town so this is perfect and I can fill them with gift cards instead of toys or candy - they will love it! Thank you!

karine said...

I just finished it yesterday. it is just perfect. thanks for the wonderfull idea !

Ombellifere said...

Wow, it's so pretty ! I love how you've chosen all the colors !

mike cooper said...

I didnt knew that adhesive tape can also be used like this... I really liked it.